The costs associated with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer in the UK will dramatically increase by 2021, according to a new report published by private healthcare provider Bupa.
The costs per year could rise to as much as £15.3bn, a 62% increase over the 2010 figure of £9.4bn.
The increases equate to an increase of approximately £10,000 to £40,000 for the average cost of treating someone diagnosed with cancer, representing a significant impact on the nation’s National Health Service.
The report was, however, dismissed by the Department of Health, which issued a statement reading: "Over the past five years, expenditure on cancer has grown no faster than costs for the NHS as a whole."
The report found that the NHS will be dealt the biggest impact, with costs rising by 65% to £5.2bn a year, with the private healthcare sector also witnessing a 65% increase to £531m a year.
Bupa expects demand for cancer diagnosis and treatment to rise by 2% annually over the next decade, with demand for new treatments to steadily rise by 3.7% a year over the same period.
Potential approaches to reduce the impact highlighted by the report include improved national planning for the availability of new and innovative treatments, a rethink of how out-of-hospital care is managed, and enabling patients to transfer between public and private care facilities more easily.